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Chernobyl disaster

The worst manmade disaster in human history

By : Chetan Sakharkar Shrutika Mahale Pradeep Singh Kaustubh Kumar Akshay Patel

Incharge : Durga Bodke

Where is Chernobyl?


Built in 197819781979 Chernobyl

The Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant

Located 11 miles north of the city of Chernobyl Plant consisted of 4 reactors Produced 10% of Ukraines electricity Construction began in the 1970s Reactor #4 was completed in 1983 At the time of the accident, reactors #5 and #6 were in progress.

How the plant worked

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. As the reaction occurs, the uranium fuel becomes hot The water pumped through the core in pressure tubes removes the heat from the fuel The water is then boiled into steam The steam turns the turbines The water is then cooled Then the process repeats

What happened?
Saturday, April 26, 1986: -Reactor #4 was undergoing a test to test the backup power supply in case of a power loss. -The power fell too low, allowing the concentration of neutron absorber to rise. -The workers continued the test, and in order to control the rising levels of neutron absorber, the control rods were pulled out.

What happened? contd

-The experiment involved shutting down the coolant pumps, which caused the coolant to rapidly heat up and boil. -Pockets of steam formed in the coolant lines. When the coolant expanded in this particular design, the power level went up. -All control rods were ordered to be inserted. As the rods were inserted, they became deformed and stuck. The reaction could not be stopped. -The rods melted and the steam pressure caused an explosion, which blew a hole in the roof. A graphite fire also resulted from the explosion.

Fighting the Fire

About four and a half hours after the explosion, all of the fires were extinguished, except the graphite fire inside the reactor , by 37 fire crews consisting of 186 firemen. It took 9 days to completely extinguish the monstrous fire.

The reactor design was unstable at low power levels, and prone to suddenly increasing energy production to a dangerous level. This property of the reactor was unknown to the crew.

-To save money, the reactor was constructed

with only partial containment, which allowed the radiation to escape. 13%-30% of the material 13%escaped.

Human Errors
The human factor had to considered as major element in causing the disaster.
Isolation of the emergency core cooling system Unsafe amount of control rods withdrawn Disabling the emergency Auto shutdown system Many missed signals before the accident

International spread of radioactivity. Isolated Pripyat. Genetic mutations giving rise to various disorders.

Radioactive fallout


Cement sarcophagus built in the months after disaster. 5,000 tons of sand thrown on top of reactor core

Many of those firefighters who battled the fire from the reactor building died. .

Deserted Pripyat

Abondoned school in pripyat

Isolated houses

Device indicating the amount of radiation leaking even today !!!

Direct Casualties
5.5 million people still live in contaminated areas 31 people died in 3 months of radiation poisoning 134 emergency workers suffered from acute radiation sickness 25,000 rescue workers died since then of diseases caused by radiation Cancer afflicts many others Increased birth defects, miscarriages, and stillbirths

Indirect Casualties
By the year 2000 there were 1800 case of thyroid cancer in children and adolescent High number of suicide and violent death among Firemen, policemen, and other recovery workers

Genetic Defects

Problems Today
The Sarcophagus
It is falling apart! According to a 2003 report by the Russian Atomic Energy Minister, "the concrete shell surrounding the Chernobyl nuclear reactor is in real danger of collapsing at any time." A new Sarcophagus is scheduled to be completed in 2009